West View in Dry Drayton, Cambridgeshire, is a new-build home ideal for nature lovers
Situated in a prominent position on St Neots Road is a quite exceptional modern detached residence of significant style and substance finished to an extremely high standard with spacious and inviting accommodation covering about 4500 sq ft.
The property features an impressive open-plan kitchen/dining/living room with full-width double glazed doors overlooking the grounds which extend to around half an acre.
It was built by housebuilder Nelson O’Connor, who has been living there with his wife since it was completed almost a year ago until he finds a buyer. West View is the first of four houses he plans to construct on the same road. “I bought the plot because it was a brownfield site, the road was bypassed and it was a good opportunity to build some nice houses here,” he said. “It was designed by Hugh Reynolds of Morris Architects, who sadly passed away before this one was finished – so it was one of the last things he worked on. I think he did an amazing job.”
West View has many unique features as far as the actual building is concerned. “Mr Reynolds put in extra insulation in the roof and all the outside walls are all extra-insulated,” explained Mr O’Connor. “The roof tiles are all Redland classic, the bricks are Audley Antiques and the number of people who’ve pulled up outside the gate and asked me for the name of the bricks and the tiles because they think they look so good...”
The gardens are beautifully landscaped and the whole plot is incredibly nature-friendly. Mr O’Connor revealed that birds regularly perch on the door handles and that deer, pheasants, barn owls, kestrels, foxes and rabbits can often be spotted in the fenced-off ‘wildlife garden’ (complete with greenhouse) behind the main stretch of greenery.
The enterprising businessman also built a novel, bird-friendly fence. “The fence is double-cladded,” he observed. “It’s got a roof on the top and there’s straw all the way through so the birds can nest there – it’s just like a bird box, really. If you put a few feeders out, the birds should come, and if someone plants a hedge alongside the fence they’ll have even more wildlife.”
Mr O’Connor emphasised the extent to which nature ‘engulfs’ the property: “If you leave the gate at the back open, in no time at all the rabbits will walk right through it.”